Bharat Bytes: Strong year for PC sales; ARTPARK; Microsoft data centre launch; Airbnb, Walmart, IBM seek IT workers

Bharat Bytes is Computerworld India’s regular round-up of news from the world of IT.

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India’s PC market grew 44.5% in 2021

PC shipments to Indian buyers in 2021 were up 44.5% year-on-year according to IDC’s latest figures, marking a strong recovery after production and delivery slowed in 2020 when businesses shut down due to the pandemic. The market for desktop PCs recovered more slowly, up just 30% year-on-year, as the trend towards hybrid or home working continues.

Of the 14.8 million units shipped, 11.6 million were notebooks.

HP held on to the largest share of the Indian PC market in 2021 with 31.5%, up from 28.7% in 2020. Dell Technologies had the second highest share for the year with 23.6%, followed by Lenovo with 18.4%, Acer Group with 8.2% and Asus with 5.9%.

In the fourth quarter of 2021 the vendors collectively shipped more than 4 million PCs, with HP having its best quarter ever, shipping more than 1.3 million. Notebook shipments topped 3 million units for the second quarter in succession.

AI and robotics technology park launches in Bangalore

Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Technology Park (ARTPARK), a non-profit organization, was launched at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru. Minister for Information Technology, Biotechnology, and Science and Technology Dr. C N Ashwathnarayan launched the park, which aims to create a globally leading AI and robotics innovation ecosystem in India.

A joint initiative of IISc and AI Foundry, ARTPARK was set up with seed funding of ₹230 crore from the Union government and Karnataka state government.

It will aim to solve problems unique to India through R&D projects in healthcare, education, mobility, infrastructure, agriculture, retail, and cybersecurity.

Microsoft and Web Werks add data centres in Hyderabad

Microsoft is establishing a data centre in Hyderabad, its fourth and largest in India. The company already has data centres in Pune, Mumbai, and Chennai. According to a Microsoft-sponsored report by IDC in July 2021, Microsoft data centre regions in India added 169,000 new skilled IT jobs to India’s economy between 2016 and 2020.

Web Werks too is adding a data centre capacity in the city and the first phase will be ready by 2022 end. It has acquired a building in the city and plans to convert it into a 120,000 square-foot colocation space able to support IT loads of up to 6 MW.

Airbnb seeks IT professionals for its new Indian tech hub

Airbnb is planning a new technology hub in Bangalore for which it is looking to hire skilled IT workers. The company plans to further expand its footprint in the country in the future.

Walmart Global Tech is hiring 5,000 workers

WGT, the IT organization that develops applications for US supermarket chain Walmart from a base in India, is hiring again. The company has a large tech team in India which recently developed AI-based apps to help shoppers and store staff. This time around, though, the bulk of the 5,000 new hires will be in Canada, at a new hub in Toronto that the company says is destined to become one of its largest globally. However, it will continue to grow its team in India.

IBM develops outside big metro areas

IBM Consulting is opening new software development centres in Kochi and Coimbatore. The company said the new locations will enable it to draw on a broader talent pool, and provide workers with the flexibility to live outside the major metro areas. The Kochi team will be built around existing team from IBM’s recent acquisition of Neudesic. IBM already has development teams in Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune, Mysuru and National Capital Region.

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